1.8 percent of Turkey’s total exports go to Saudi Arabia

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Istanbul / Anatolia

An Anadolu survey showed that Turkish commodity exports to the Saudi market constitute only 1.8 percent of Ankara’s total annual exports, according to identical official data.

The survey was based on the trade exchange figures between the two countries for the years 2018 and 2019, issued by the Saudi General Authority for Statistics (Hukoomi) and the Turkish Statistics Office.

A few weeks ago, calls appeared in Saudi Arabia to boycott Turkish products without giving reasons, while some stores in the Kingdom replaced Turkish products with others, according to local officials and citizens who shared photos of the matter.

And the “semi-official” calls to boycott Turkish products took a more clear character, after official statements in this direction made by the Chairman of the Council of Saudi Chambers of Commerce, Ajlan Al-Ajlan, on September 29.

The data of the two statistical institutions in Ankara and Riyadh show that the Kingdom’s total imports of Turkish goods amounted to $ 2.7 billion in 2018, before rising to 3.1 billion in 2019.

Saudi Arabia’s share of Turkish exports constitutes only 1.8 percent of Turkey’s total exports, which broke the barrier of $ 171.5 billion in 2019, compared to $ 167.9 billion in 2018.

In contrast, Saudi Arabia’s total exports to Turkey amounted to $ 3.4 billion in 2018 (the latest available data), up from 2.55 billion in 2017, according to data from the Saudi General Authority for Statistics.

Among the most prominent Turkish exports to the Saudi market are food and clothing products of all kinds, in addition to tobacco products, textile and carpet industries, building stone and marble, and metal and wood industries such as furniture.

Riyadh’s calls are considered a violation of the decisions of supply chains and the instructions of the World Trade Organization, at a time when Turkey has not put any obstacles to the flow of Saudi products so far, to respond to the recent steps.

On July 8, Saudi Arabia announced the nomination of the former Minister of Economy, Muhammad Al-Tuwaijri, to assume the post of Director-General of the World Trade Organization during the coming period, “out of the Kingdom’s belief in the multilateral trading system and the vital role of the World Trade Organization.”

According to data from the Turkish Ministry of Trade, the country’s exports to Saudi Arabia between January and August of this year decreased by 18 percent on an annual basis.

The value of Turkish exports during the period reached 1.9 billion dollars, down 400 million dollars from the same period last year, down from 2.3 billion dollars in the corresponding period of 2019.
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